Improve food access, affordability, and quality, and encourage a sustainable, resilient food system
Quality food is fundamental to a healthy life. However, the City’s current food system does not allow for equitable access to nutritious food. There are broken links between food production, sales to distributors and wholesale buyers, and delivery to consumers that result in inequitable distribution of and access to healthy food.
Moreover, approximately 1.4 million New Yorkers, or one in six, report they are food insecure, a result of unemployment, poverty, and other household characteristics. Food insecure families may worry that food will run out before they have enough money to buy more, eat less than they should, or be unable to afford to eat balanced meals. The availability, quality, and affordability of food affect the quality of New Yorkers’ diets. Cardiovascular disease, which is often connected to poor diet, is the leading cause of death for men and women in New York City.
Increased fruit and vegetable consumption is associated with a decreased risk of chronic diseases such as hypertension, heart disease, and stroke. Not all New Yorkers consume the same amount. The 2013 Community Health Survey reported the lowest levels of consumption were among black and Hispanic New Yorkers, those with low education levels, and those living in high-poverty neighborhoods.